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Economic strategy will yield jobs in two years – Expert

By
Godwill Arthur-Mensah, GNA

Accra, Aug. 2, GNA – Dr Lord Mensah, a Finance
and Investment Expert, says the economic strategy adopted by the Government
would yield fruitful results with creation of jobs in the next two or
two-and-half years time.

He said the economic policies of the
government were to create an enabling environment for the private sector to
invest in the economy, hence the reduction and abolition of certain nuisance
taxes in the Budget Statement in March this year.

Government had also stopped borrowing from the
banks, therefore giving opportunity to the private entities and entrepreneurs
to borrow from financial institutions to expand their businesses, he observed.

According to him, the decision has had
tremendous impact on the macro-economic indicators resulting in the decline of
the inflation rate, the lending rate and the stabilisation of the local
currency and the exchange rate.

“Although the strategy adopted by Government
is conservative but it is understandable because it wants to spend within its
means, therefore, it will yield long term benefits,” he explained, saying;
“Ghanaians should be patient and would reap the results in the next two or
two-and-half years with creation of jobs”.

Dr Mensah, who is a Senior Lecturer at the
Business School, Finance Department of the University of Ghana, gave this
analysis in an interview with the Ghana News Agency, in Accra, in reaction to
the Government’s Mid-year Budget Review delivered by Mr Ken Ofori-Atta, the
Finance Minister, to Parliament last Monday.

The Finance and Investment Expert noted that
the economic strategy by Government would instil investor confidence in the
national economy with evidence from the lowering of the macroeconomic indicators
and, therefore, both domestic and international investors would like to take
advantage and make quick money, he said.

“Government should remain focused implementing
its policies although pressure will mount on them from Ghanaians and even party
faithful, but that shouldn’t derail its efforts,” he advised.

He urged the Finance Minister to be truthful
at all times and communicate economic sense to Ghanaians.

“When you’re in opposition you may not have
all the information on the economy so you can make promises but they did not
give timelines to those promises,” he said.

Dr Mensah observed that Government would not
like to increase the country’s debt stock at the moment hence it stopped
borrowing from the domestic banks.

However, he said, government would start
borrowing later when it realised that it had mobilised sufficient revenue and
increased the production base of the export commodities.

Dr Mensah said if Government starts borrowing
now, the treasure bill and other macro-economic indicators would shore up.

Commenting on whether Government could
eliminate its arrears by 2019, Dr Mensah said it was feasible because the
Executive had weighed its policies and, therefore, expecting to increase its
revenue base so that it would pay all the statutory arrears and allowances by
that period.

He said the dwindling fortunes of the service
sector could be attributed to the decline of the macro-economic indicators and
Government’s refusal to borrow from the domestic banks.

Commenting on the failure of Government to
meet its revenue target for the first half of the year, Dr Mensah said the
country experienced downturn in the prices of the export commodities such as
gold, diamond and cocoa from May to June, in addition to the abolition of some
taxes.

He expressed optimism that if the Government
remained focused in spite of the pressure from Ghanaians and some party
sympathisers to implement its economic policies, it would yield positive
outcomes in the next few years.

GNA

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